NBC's Friends and CBS's Survivor have resumed their titanic Thursday night battles, and, according to preliminary affiliate based National Nielsen ratings for Sept. 25., both shows are clearly off and running.

Mediaweek's Marc Berman notes that although a 45-minute season premiere episode of Friends kicked off with a time period winning 18.8/28 rating/share, comparatively it was off 16 percent from last fall's opener (22.5/33 on Sept. 26, 2002). Meanwhile, week two of Survivor: Pearl Islands was second with an 11.9/18 -- five percent below the 12.5/18 ratings that Survivor: Thailand scored a year ago on the same night. Comparatively, the second episode of Survivor was also off 14 percent from last week's season premiere (13.8/21 on Sept. 19, 2003) which had the benefit of airing against a Friends repeat.

Airing against the supersized premieres of Friends and Will and Grace, the second episode of Survivor: Pearl Islands drew 19.29 million viewers.

Survivor: Pearl Islands was a strong second to Friends in households, viewers, adults 18-34 (5.3/16), adults 18-49 (7.2/20) and adults 25-54 (8.8/22). Survivor also showed major growth at 8:30 PM, increasing +13% in households (12.4/19 from 11.0/18), +16% in adults 18-34 (5.7/17 from 4.9/16), +18% in adults 18-49 (7.8/21 from 6.6/19), +16% in adults 25-54 (9.5/22 from 8.2/21) while adding +2.85m viewers (20.72m from 17.87m).